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Panther swimmers record first win, enter conference schedule


For the Call

Earlier this month, the girls swimming and diving team at Mehlville Senior High recorded their first win of the 2003 season in a 118-65 victory over Affton. The win was a special moment for the Panthers as they take on a tough schedule which includes the Suburban West Conference which is regarded by many as being the best in the state.

"Affton was a fun meet because the times between the two teams are so comparable," Mehlville head coach Kim Kleotku told the Call. "The majority of our girls are underclassmen and many are new to competitive swimming. But I think we're making progress."

In the win over Affton, Mehlville sophomore Jen Arendes posted wins in the 100 yard butterfly and and 100 yard breaststroke. Junior Julie Barac also recorded wins in the 50 and 100 yard freestyle for the Panthers.

"Jen puts in a ton of dedication and has a lot of spirit," Kleotku said. "Julie is returning this season from a back injury that she suffered from a car wreck and I'm just so glad to have her back."

Sophomore Bridget Selez captured the one-meter springboard competition with a score of 164.90 after six dives while classmate Sarah Dalton won the 200 yard individual medley.

"Bridget is a talented young diver who's trying to learn more and more difficult dives," Kleotku said. "Sarah's the kind of person who always is wiling to give us her best during every meet."

Senior Corinne Matti finished out the win for the Panthers with a victory in the 100 yard backstroke.

"Corinne started swimming for us as a freshman," Kleotku said. "She's really dedicated to herself."

Mehlville returns to action this Wednesday afternoon as they host conference rival Marquette. The Panthers will also travel to Eureka on Friday for a non-conference meet with the Wildcats.

"Right now we're just trying to get everyone to have all four strokes down which is a building block for next year," Kleotku said.

Both the Marquette and Eureka meets are scheduled for a 4:30 p.m. start.

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